The English environment in Malaysia has grown extensively compared to a decade ago. English has been viewed as a great asset to achieve developments and the language of knowledge. Anyone who wants to learn a foreign language has their work cut out for them.

You can consider yourself lucky living in modernized Malaysia as you are already in an immersive English learning environment. English is all around you. Even the standard of the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), a public high school examination, has been upgraded to coordinate with the 1119 GCE-O English paper.

Due to this, it has become a trend for parents to go all the way to send their kids to the best English school from as early as 4 years old. I can proudly say, almost 70% of generation ‘Z’ can speak English well.

Continue on reading as Superprof wants to give you a roadmap so you can find your way to grasp the concept of Tackling ‘A’ in SPM.

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The Need to Understand the SPM English Format

Even though most of the generation ‘Z’s can now have an extra advantage in both Paper 3 (Listening) and Paper 4 (Speaking), however, researches show that the ability to communicate does not come along with the ability to do well in English writing paper. This same situation is also common in the English native speaker’s countries, whereby the native English speakers are not as fluent on the written test.

With the latest 2021 SPM English Format, there will be four papers, which are writing, reading, listening, and speaking tests.

Find out more on SPM English 2021 Format

How to Score Reading Comprehension Test in Paper 1 SPM English

reading a proverb book
Read more books to increase your vocabularies and understanding in more complex sentences (Source: Unsplash)

Reading is one crucial part of learning English. To be good at reading, you have to know what the words mean, and clearly understand the context of the sentences, which usually is a much harder task. Understanding a single sentence of the context or even the whole story is not the only thing in reading comprehension.

For SPM paper 1, reading comprehension questions are the easiest questions to score. You will only need to choose the correct answer from the multiple-choice question. My dad always reminded me that there is only one correct answer so choose that instead of the wrong answers. I always laughed and replied “Easier said than done!”.

However, as I grasped the concept, I understood that the chance I can get the right answer is 25%. When the questions get tricky, I’ll always increase my chances by eliminating the wrong answers. If I managed to identify at least one incorrect answer, the chances to get the right one will increase to 33.3%.

You know, we are bound to easily find the wrong answers more compared to the correct ones. So, you should develop your identifying skills for these multiple-choice questions.

How to Score Writing Test in Paper 2 SPM

Those who are still not familiar with speaking and listening might prefer to do more reading and writing exercises. If you also feel the same way, you already have the right mindset to get better at writing in English.

To get started, you need to increase your vocabulary. You can take extra classes, read English novels or practice writing by copying from your English textbook or other related books. Some people will copy and write an article a day, some others will copy one page of a dictionary every single day.

Once you encounter a new word, you can write it up in a journal. Journaling is used to describe your experiences or your daily life. This is one of the best ways to make yourself familiar with writing. Another name for a journal is called a diary.

Like everything in life, in order to become skilled in English, you will need to spend adequate time, effort, and continuous practice; remember, Rome was not built in a day! 

Get more tips on decoding SPM English Essay

How to Score Speaking Test in Paper 3 SPM 2021

Malaysian student English communication
Start to communicate in proper English with all your peers, and avoid using Manglish to make improvements to your speaking skills (Source: The Star)

The nativisation of Malaysia Languages that consist of Bahasa Melayu, Chinese Dialects, and Indian language, with English as the secondary language, has created a new distinguished linguistic feature called ‘Manglish’. Most Malaysian recognize ‘Manglish’ as a form of 'broken English’ (improper English).

This has made learning proper English harder especially for those who are lacking in any proper English lesson. You will need to work harder to pick up new English words and use them properly. You will likely rely on English lessons for chances to speak English and pick up the language skills but that doesn’t mean you can’t pick up new words outside of class.

Thus, Superprof has put a few guidelines on what you can do to improve your speaking skills.

Firstly, try to avoid using broken English especially by ending any word or sentences with ‘lah’ , ‘lor’ or ‘ma’.

  • Uncle, please give me more discount ‘lor’ – WRONG!
  • You don't have to worry ‘ma’, Okay ‘lah’ – WRONG!

You can just omit the local word or Manglish from your sentences and believe me, you will become a better English speaker then.

Secondly, you need to toss away your insecurity. When it comes to speaking skills, the only way to improve your English fluency is to speak. Do not feel embarrassed to make mistakes. Making mistakes is one way of learning. You will get better in time.

If you never know failure, you will never know success.

Thirdly, try to boost your confidence. Talk to a MIRROR! If you have ever played any SIMs game, you will now understand why you can gain charisma skills by talking to a mirror.

What can you see from a mirror is you. You can see where your weakness is when speaking. You can correct your own speeches, the way you talk, or even your facial expression when talking. You wouldn’t want yourself to speak like a robot right?

How to Score Listening Test in Paper 4 SPM 2021

SPM Listening test OMR Paper
You'll need to listen carefully to the conversation and shade your OMR paper for the SPM English Listening test (Source: Pixabay)

When you are trying to gain listening skills, you can try to be an active learner. Learn to listen to any conversation, whether in a movie, songs, or your surroundings. Focus on one source of conversation at one time. This is a far better way to gain listening skills. You will likely remember more of what you hear and able to understand what you have listen to.

You can practice active listening by picking a specific time to learn when there is less interference around you. Example by listening to a radio programme early in the morning. Jot down everything you hear and understand.

Besides, you can go to any online sources for English listening practices and tests.

Look for SPM English Past Papers

Today, we are living in an era where information and technology are a great assistant to human beings. There are many websites that offer practical lessons, games, and videos for English Learners. A lot of information can be gathered at a single click; no more spending days researching topics at the library!

Thanks to the developments of modern technology such as the internet, we can find a lot of good instructional sites worthy of consideration. However, you need to know that some information is fake and untrustworthy.

With that being said,  you have to consult with reputable sources, like Superprof, as it is a recommended and trustworthy English learning site and where you can find English SPM past papers!

superprof personal tutor
Finding an online or in-person tutor to learn English is a wonderful idea. (Source: Unsplash)

You can always improve your English level by practicing outside the classroom. Socialize with English-speaking friends, read a newspaper and watch films and TV in English. This way, learning will feel fun instead of hard work!

After implementing all the tips stated in this blog, are you still struggling to learn and are unconfident to get ‘A’ for your SPM English Paper?

If so, have no fear, Superprof tutors are here to save the day! 

Understand SPM English Marking Scheme

A thorough understanding of how your English paper is marked is vital in obtaining a good score in your examination. Once you know it, you can make a calculation on how many marks you should get right and how many you can lose to get 'A' in the test.

However, the best way to complete your journey to successfully tackling 'A' in your SPM English is to consistently practice and do exercises. From here, you will be able to experience yourself marking your own paper. If you are not capable of doing this by yourself, fret not, you can just hire qualified tutors!

This is the perfect solution to help with your English lesson. You can get personal tutors specializing in English SPM Format which are highly recommended since they instill confidence in the student, provide personalized assistance, and are available at a time and place that best suits your needs.

While there are many tutoring sites on the internet available in Malaysia, Superprof is hands-down, the best option available. Also, here’s the interesting part of Superprof tutors. The first lesson is entirely free! Therefore, there’s absolutely no pressure to stay if you did not enjoy your classes or tutors.

Hire a Superprof private educator today! We promise you’ll absolutely not regret it!

Look out for more info on what is SPM English Marking Scheme.

 

 

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Alia

Alia Jamaludin is known as a passionate environmentalist and animal lover. By being both educator and writer, she can reach out her positive thought to almost every being on this planet.